Mac users who rely on Windows virtualization software might be left in the lurch when Apple transitions to its own custom ARM processors later this year, as the company’s Rosetta Intel-to-ARM translator does not support virtual machine apps.
Apple outlined Rosetta’s — technically Rosetta 2’s — limitations in a developer document posted to its website this week, noting that while it can translate “most” Intel-based apps, it is unable to do the same for virtual machine apps that virtualize x86_64 computer platforms. Popular x86_64 virtualization apps include products from Parallels and VMWare that virtualize Windows environments.
Rosetta is also unable to translate kernel extensions.
Unveiled during Monday’s WWDC keynote, Rosetta is a key feature that will help Apple and developers transition from Intel-based Macs to hardware running ARM-based chips. The software layer translates apps that contain x86_64 instructions for Apple silicon, which uses an arm64 instruction set. Rolling out the feature now gives developers time to create a universal binary for their apps, but as Apple notes, Rosetta can run slow and is not a substitute for native apps.
In addition to Rosetta’s x86 restrictions, Boot Camp will no longer be available for use on Macs powered by Apple silicon. For now, the macOS utility that enabled booting of both Windows and Mac operating systems, will remain in macOS Big Sur as an Intel-only feature. ARM Macs will not be able to access the feature and the company has not announced a replacement.
The transition to Apple silicon is expected to take about two years. Whether virtualization companies are working on a solution for ARM chips remains unknown, though VMWare on Tuesday said a Big Sur-compatible “tech preview” of Fusion will arrive in July.
Apple this week opened the Universal App Quick Start Program to get Developer Transition Kits in developer hands. The kits, which include a Mac mini running an A12Z Bionic SoC, will allow developers to build and test their wares prior to the release of the first ARM Macs later this year.
An unhealthy dose of skepticism is required for today’s offering from the deities that oversee the world of technology leaks. A Twitter account by the name of Jimmy Is Promo purports to have images of Samsung’s new Galaxy Note 20 Ultra out in the wild. We can’t be sure why this particular account would have scored such a unit, but the hardware does seem to look a lot like the earlier leak from Samsung’s own website.
Note users, don’t get use to the S Pen location. It’ll move to the other side. So will the speaker. Both now Left of the Charge Port. #Note20#GalaxyNote20Ultra
If — and it’s a big if — these images are genuine, it looks as if Samsung has made a couple of aesthetic tweaks compared to its predecessor. In a tweet, “Jimmy Is Promo” claimed that the S-Pen housing is now left of the charging port, compared to its usual bottom-right-corner placement. It also looks as if the volume rocker and sleep/wake button, which were on the left side before, has been switched over to the right.
These days, Samsung likes to launch new Note devices in the middle of August and we were expecting that to be the case this year. The only wrinkle is that the company has also promised a “virtual” event to coincide with IFA, the last big event in the annual tech calendar. That will happen in early September, which is likely too late to launch the new Note(s) unless COVID-19 has really forced Samsung into a delay.
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The OnePlus Nord is the next smartphone from OnePlus, coming in to resuscitate the brand’s presence in the more affordable segments of the smartphone market in Europe and India. It has been five years since the launch of the OnePlus X, the company’s first phone outside of the flagship space and the Nord is expected to come in and provide more options to consumers looking to buy a new smartphone. Now, OnePlus has officially announced that they will be launching the OnePlus Nord on July 21 through the world’s first AR smartphone launch.
Spicing up online launches is not entirely new to OnePlus, as we have seen the company hold a virtual, VR launch for the OnePlus 2 back in 2015. With the Nord, OnePlus will pivot to AR for the launch and provide users a different kind of hands-on experience with the device.
“OnePlus Nord represents a new beginning for OnePlus, giving us an opportunity to share our technology with more people around the world. For this launch, we want everyone to sit back, relax, and experience our new phone for the first time right in the comfort of their living room. We feel that introducing this phone in a more personal and intimate way perfectly reflects our ambition to make the OnePlus experience more accessible to users.”
To experience the launch, download the OnePlus Nord AR App from the Play Store or the App Store. Install and launch the app to grant it requisite permissions for the AR experience and to complete the avatar setup. On launch day, i.e. on July 21 at 10 AM EDT/7.30 PM IST, launch the app and follow the on-screen instructions to start the immersive AR experience.
OnePlus has also created a physical AR invitation that will give users a unique hands-on experience of the OnePlus Nord. OnePlus has not yet shared how to receive the physical invitation, but you would need to scan the QR code on the physical invitation to begin the AR hands-on experience. We reckon that the experience would open up to other users too, perhaps at a later date.
OnePlus appears to have picked a date for the launch of its midrange smartphone: July 21. Invites for the event were posted early to Amazon India (a major launch country for the device) and first spotted by leaker Ishan Agarwal (the actual tweet has been deleted, but XDA has a backup). Amazon pulled the page down, too, but a Google cache copy still exists.
OnePlus has been slowly dripping out information on its next smartphone, which will see a return to a cheaper price tag. Early rumors called the phone the “OnePlus 8 Lite” or “OnePlus Z,” but the company confirmed the phone will go with the odd moniker of “OnePlus Nord,” a word that means “north” in several languages. We might not know all the specs, but OnePlus has already confirmed the price will be “under $500.”
OnePlus says the phone will come with a Snapdragon 765G and will sport a “flagship camera.” Sadly, North America does not seem to be in the first wave of countries for this release, with OnePlus CEO Pete Lau saying, “we are going to start relatively small with this new product line by first introducing it in Europe and India. But don’t worry, we’re also looking to bring more affordable smartphones to North America in the near future as well.”
Other than that, things about the Nord are murky. Before OnePlus started letting official info trickle out, there were consistently rumors about a midrange OnePlus device with a MediaTek 1000 SoC and a 90Hz display, which now we know weren’t accurate. In a documentary on the development of the Nord, OnePlus says the phone was whipped up in only six months, which would mean development started after the release of these renders from December 2019. So maybe all previous rumors were for a canceled product. Android Central says the phone will have two selfie cameras in an oval-shaped hole punch, just like a Galaxy S10+, which is another strike against the renders.
We can’t go without mentioning that OnePlus’ social media teasing of this phone even extends to hyping up the box that it ships in, which the company says has a “sleek, new design” (it’s box-shaped) and is “incredibly sturdy.” Apparently, two people can stand on the box without crushing it. Our local recycling center will be thrilled.
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